Rush-hour travel chaos for commuters in storm-lashed Leeds

Stormy conditions cause problems for pedestrians in Leeds on Friday.
Stormy conditions cause problems for pedestrians in Leeds on Friday.
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Commuters in Leeds endured another miserable morning rush-hour today as heavy rain and strong winds continued to pound the city.

High-sided vehicles were once again being diverted away from the area around the city centre’s Bridgewater Place skyscraper due to safety concerns.

Council bosses said the road restrictions were likely to remain in force until lunchtime.

Drivers on the M1 were hit by delays of up to 30 minutes after a multi-vehicle accident closed three lanes of the motorway’s northbound carriageway near Lofthouse.

There were also hold-ups between junctions 25 and 27 of the M62 eastbound and junctions 31 and 32 of the same motorway’s westbound carriageway.

The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning for the whole of Yorkshire and Humberside up until 4pm today.

Its experts said wind speeds in the region could touch 70mph and warned of possible disruption to transport.

Today’s problems on the roads followed similar delays in and around Leeds city centre during Friday morning’s rush-hour.

Closures of roads at Bridgewater Place are needed in stormy conditions as they can lead to the area around the 32-storey tower being gripped by a dangerous “wind tunnel” effect.

Rail services between Leeds, Wakefield Kirkgate and Knottingley were delayed early today after a person was struck by a train near Pontefract Tanshelf station.